1. What is a RPAS and UAS?
RPAS is a layman terminology for Unmanned Aircraft (UA). There are three subsets of Unmanned Aircraft.
a) Remotely Piloted Aircraft
b) Autonomous Aircraft
c) Model Aircraft
An aircraft and its associated elements, which are operated with no pilot on board are called an Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS).
2. What is Remotely Piloted Aircraft System (RPAS) and its categories?

RPAS is one subset of UAS. A remotely piloted aircraft (RPA), its associated remote pilot station(s), the required command and control links and any other components, as specified in the type design.
Civil RPA is categorized in accordance with MTOW (including payload) as indicated below:
Nano: Less than or equal to 250 grams.
Micro: Greater than 250 grams and less than or equal to 2 kg.
Small: Greater than 2 kg and less than or equal to 25 kg.
Medium: Greater than 25 kg and less than or equal to 150 kg.
Large: Greater than 150 kg.

3. What are the requirements for import of RPAs (with or without camera) in India?

Any entity intending to import RPAS in India shall obtain Equipment Type Approval (ETA) from WPC Wing, Department of Telecommunication for operating in the delicensed frequency band(s). Such approval shall be valid for a particular make and model.
The applicant, other than the Nano category, shall apply to DGCA along with ETA for import clearance. Based upon the import clearance issued by DGCA, DGFT shall issue a license for the import of RPAS.

4. What is NPNT and how do I comply with that?

NPNT or ‘No Permission – No Take-off’ is a software program that enables every RPA (except Nano) to obtain valid permission through the DigitalSky platform before operating in India. Please contact your OEM/ Manufacturer for complying with this requirement.

5. What is controlled and uncontrolled airspace?

Controlled airspace is an airspace of defined dimensions within which ATC services are provided.
Uncontrolled airspace is airspace where an Air Traffic Control (ATC) service is not necessary or cannot be provided for practical reasons.

6. I am intending to locally purchase one RPA operating in a de-licensed frequency band, should I still require ETA from WPC Wing, DoT?

ETA from WPC Wing is required for all wireless equipment working in the de-licensed frequency band(s) in India. Ensure to get ETA from the seller or manufacturer of RPA which is required to be uploaded while applying for UIN.

7. What is UIN?

UIN is a unique identification number issued by DGCA for a particular RPA (except Nano).

8. How much is the fee for UIN & UAOP?

For UIN: – One thousand Indian Rupees (Rs.1000/-)
For fresh UAOP: – Twenty-Five Thousand Rupees (Rs.25,000/-)

9. Where do I pay fees for UIN and UAOP for RPA?

You need to make the payment via the Bharatkosh website. You need to mention the transaction receipt number and upload a copy of the payment receipt in DigitalSky Platform at the time of your application.

10. If I am just flying my UAS inside a building, do I have to register it?

For Nano, no UIN is required. However, for the micro category and above, UIN is required.

11. What is UAOP?

UAOP is Unmanned Aircraft Operator Permit.

12. Who all are required to obtain UAOP?

All operators other than exempted categories mentioned below are required to obtain UAOP from DGCA: –
Operators of Nano &Micro category in uncontrolled airspace/ enclosed premises up to 50ft and 200ft respectively
RPA operated by NTRO, ARC, and Central Intelligence Agencies

13. What is the validity of UAOP?

Five years.

14. How do I report an incident or accident?

The operator of all RPA except Nano RPA will notify any incident/accident involving RPA via occurrence report to the concerned authorities.

15. My RPA is completely broken. Can I use its UIN for another RPA of the same make and model?

No. The operator has to apply for fresh UIN.

16. Where should I apply for security clearance?

For Security clearance, apply as per the form available in the CAR on RPAS or Use eSahaj– Online portal for processing security clearance applications available in DGCA homepage www.dgca.nic.in

17. I have a Nano RPA. What permissions do I require?

Nano RPA (less than 250 gm) is exempted from obtaining UIN and UAOP. Please ensure not to fly it beyond 50 ft (15m) AGL. Also, ensure you are not flying in controlled airspace and no other manned or unmanned aircraft is flying nearby. If operations to be done in controlled airspace you need to apply for UIN, UAOP and your RPA must be NPNT compliant. It is recommended to fly in uncontrolled airspace/ enclosed premises and go through Do’s and Don’ts every time before you fly.

18. I have a micro-RPA engaged in wedding photography, what permission do I need to keep doing it legally.

You need to obtain UIN.
You will not require an UAOP if you are flying your RPA below 200 ft (60m) AGL in uncontrolled airspace/ enclosed premises. However, you shall intimate the local police office at least 24 hours prior to conduct of actual operations.
Your RPA needs to be NPNT compliant and you have to obtain permission through DigitalSky before flying.

19. I am an individual who wants to film my friend’s marriage using RPAs. What permission do I need?

If you have a micro RPA, flying within enclosed premises and below 200ft then; you need to apply for a UIN and to intimate local police before operating your RPA. You will require UAOP and NPNT if you are flying in controlled airspace.
Also ensure, no other manned or unmanned aircraft is flying nearby.

20. Is delivery of items allowed under the DGCA CAR on UAS?

Not allowed as of now.

21. I want to deliver foods using RPAs and it will be fully autonomous and fly below 50 ft. Whom should I contact for necessary permission.

Not allowed as of now.

22. What are the minimum requirements and eligibility for becoming a remote pilot for flying RPAs?

You should have attained 18 years of age, having passed the 10th exam in English, and undergone training at DGCA approved flying training organization (FTO).

23. What is an SOP?

SOP or standard operating procedure is a catalog of procedures that is agreed between prospective UAOP holders and DGCA for safe operation of RPAs in India.

24. What is the visual line of sight for flying a RPA?

Generally, 450m (unaided) in Visual Meteorological Conditions (VMC) with minimum ground visibility of 5 km.

25. I am a wedding photographer and I have a micro RPA. Most of the marriages in Northern India happen after sunset. Can I use my RPA for covering marriages at night?

All RPA operations are restricted to day light and within visual line of sight. However, if you are shooting in well-lit enclosed premises using micro RPA up to 200 ft. AGL is allowable. Ensure your RPA is NPNT compliant and issued with UIN. Also, you need to inform local police before flying.
Ensure that you follow Do’s and Don’ts and respect individuals’ privacy.

26. What are no-RPA zones?

Areas over which flying an RPA is prohibited/ restricted. Please go through the list of RPA zones in Civil Aviation Requirements.

27. What is the minimum distance to fly RPAs from the border areas?

You need to keep at least a 25 km distance from the international border which includes Line of Control (LoC), Line of Actual Control (LAC) and Actual Ground Position Line (AGPL).

28. What if I require to fly over a no-RPA zone for a genuine purpose? How do I obtain special authorization for the same?

Flying RPA over no-RPA zones is prohibited. However, DGCA may authorize such operations on a case-to-case basis subject to approval of MoD.

29. What if I want to test my RPA that was built for night operation and beyond meteorological conditions, will I be permitted by DGCA?

DGCA may authorize such operation on a case-to-case basis subject to the adequate justification provided by you for the safe conduct of RPAS operation. Please note, DGCA may impose additional conditions for permitting such operations.
In addition, you may test your RPA in the test sites specified in the Civil Aviation Requirements.

30. What will be the enforcement action on violation of the rules and regulations for RPAs?

In case of violation of the rules and regulations for RPAs, the UIN/UAOP issued by DGCA shall be suspended/canceled.
Violation of compliance to any of the requirements and falsification of records/documents shall attract penal action including imposition of penalties as per applicable IPCs (such as 287, 336, 337, 338 or any relevant section of IPC) or Aircraft Act 1934 or Aircraft Rules 1937 or any statutory provisions.

31. Where can I lodge my grievance regarding RPAs?

You can lodge your grievance by clicking “File a Grievance“ link in the Digitalsky website portal.

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